Paul Chappel, Student Advisor and Faculty Member in Glion, was recently invited by Glion and Les Roches alumni to attend their gathering in Athens, Greece. He writes on the warm hospitality he received while in the capital city, and the tight community our alumni have created.

Greeks bearing gifts

When arriving in Athens, it becomes obvious that it is a culture built on hospitality fundamentals. From the street café owners beckoning you in to sample their cuisine, the constant smell of charcoal-grilled souvlaki and the general hubbub of conversation, Athens is a place where people like to make you feel welcome. With a lovely 16-degree heat also greeting us, the weather was just as warm as the locals.

The other thing that strikes you about Athens is the Acropolis. The citadel stands proudly on the hill and is visible from each and every place you arrive. It is a great way to orientate yourself when you’re unsure of which direction to head to next.

A successful gathering

The venue for both my stay and the alumni gathering was the Radisson Blu on Alexandros Street. The hotel has been a well-established landmark in this part of Athens, both as the Park Hotel and under its current Radisson Blu branding. The Sommet Education teams did a fantastic job of organizing the event, with around 50 alumni from both Glion and Les Roches attending.

We enjoyed a wonderful dinner, including canapes, champagne and a Crème Brulée dessert, with wonderful hosting from both the Sommet team and the Radisson Blu staff. The stunning venue was located on the hotel’s eighth floor, providing panoramic views of the city and, of course, the Acropolis. Such a beautiful sight made me reflect on the heritage of our schools, and how such alumni gatherings always leave me with a feeling that the history and future is in very safe hands.

Throughout the event, the conversation was buzzing. By the time I finally checked the time, I was amazed to see that Saturday evening had turned into Sunday morning! Time flies when you’re having fun, as they say.

A proud heritage

When I awoke on Sunday morning, I felt fortunate to be part of a school that has such heritage, as well as great ambassadors in the industry who are proud to count themselves as alumni. As I looked out of my hotel window and saw the Acropolis, it gave me a reassurance that this will go on for many, many years to come.

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About the author

Glion Institute of Higher Education
Glion Institute of Higher Education is a private Swiss institution offering bachelor’s and master’s degrees in hospitality, luxury and event management to an international student body across three campuses in Switzerland and London, UK.
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